Best BANG FOR YOUR BUCK Shocks and Struts??? - MustangForums.com


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Old 05-12-2011, 11:27 PM   #1
Tommy079
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Default Best BANG FOR YOUR BUCK Shocks and Struts???

I want to ride on a cloud for the best price possible.

Currently with my stock setup (with 80,000+mi on it) I feel the bumps pretty rough. Especilally in the rear.

My goals are an extrememly comfortable daily driver ride.

When I go fast it's just for fun. So cornering, take offs, and all that is really just secondary. If I go the the drag strip that will be just for the fun of it so my suspension doesn't need to be any particular performance set up.

I just want to have the closest thing to a cadillac ride in a mustang with the least ammount of out of pocket expense.

Now I don't mean cheap! I mean affordability. For example, I know I can get an air-ride set up for a couple thousand dollars. I want to spend less than $200 per shock or strut. American Muscle seems to only have a few choices, but they're reasonable. I just don't know if they've got what I need?

Last edited by Tommy079; 05-13-2011 at 10:10 AM.
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Old 05-13-2011, 07:03 AM   #2
Jazzer The Cat
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Hey, Tommy.... welcome to my OTHER world

I have not been asked such a question as most comfortable shocks/struts, so I don't have a great answer for you. I can say that, your choices are probably going to be limited, but would probably go to a place like Sears. They are not focused toward the road-performance side of things and rather to your average Joe that wants his/her car to be comfortable and reliable.

I can say you tires are probably going to be at least as important, as they can make the ride rough too When one goes wider tire, he/she needs to go lower sidewall to retain OEM tire diameter of 25.6". Example:

245/45/17" tire = 25.6" diameter
315/35/17" tire = 25.6" diameter

Shorter sidewall = more NVH (Noise Vibration Harshness) and some improved turn-in response (how quickly the car reacts to driver input of steering wheel). If your #1 goal is to maintain a comfortable ride, you need to stay with your existing wheels and tires designed for comfort. In fact, the right size tire will ride smoother than yours currently, as the wrong size will not flex in the proper manor on bumps and such.

Jazzer

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Old 05-13-2011, 08:17 AM   #3
Tommy079
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Ok...well what about the best bang for your buck performance shocks and struts that are also comparably comfortable to some of the other more harsh ones out there???


And I was under the impression that a 245/45 is the exact same side will size as a 315/35:

245 x .45 = 110.25mm sidewall
315 x .35 = 110.25mm sidewall (also) right?

The second number is just a percentage right? So the total is the same? At least mathmatically.

Which also works out the same as what I have on now:

275 x .40 = 110mm

Am I wrong in any of this???

Last edited by Tommy079; 05-13-2011 at 08:28 AM.
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Old 05-13-2011, 09:10 AM   #4
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Your math is correct and pretty much just what I said above you, silly

Yes... the middle number is percentage of height vs. width and why the sidewalls must get shorter as the tire gets wider. You figured this out and stumps MANY pepes on here, so kudos

As for shocks/struts, the most common ones are Tokico D-Specs, Bilsteins and Koni Yellows. I run the Yellows, but the Bilsteins are a fine shock for less $$$. I recommend you do some research all around and find out what pepes are using and how they feel about them. I am not good with shocks/struts/springs anyway, so cannot help you out very well on this particular subject. Besides, ride quality is a subjective thing anyway, so what one likes another will hate.

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Old 05-13-2011, 09:50 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jazzer The Cat View Post
Yes... the middle number is percentage of height vs. width and why the sidewalls must get shorter as the tire gets wider.
Jazzer
Well...this is the part I'm not understanding. It seems to me like they all have the "same" sidewill height. It seems like they are all 110mm?

But it sounds like you're saying the sidewall gets shorter. Is that right? You said it must get shorter as it gets wider, but I don't see how it's getting shorter. The number is just getting smaller, but that's because it's a percentage number and not a size in mm.

I mean I know that when you get taller wheels the sidewall gets shorter because the wheel takes up the space that would normall be rubber.

But if it gets wider it seems like all the above mentioned sidewalls are the same height.

What I'm saying is this: Shouldn't I get the same ride quality on a 315/35 that I do out of a 275/40?

Why I ask: I REALLY want 315's and it seems to me like they have just as much sidewall rubber as what I already have.

Am I understanding this wrong?

I mean if I go with a 20" wheel and a 315/25/20 (78.75mm sidewall) that's when you lose sidewall...am I right or am I still misunderstanding something.

I'm just asking all this because you said less sidewall means a harder ride, but I think the 315/35's have the same sidewall as what I already have.

Last edited by Tommy079; 05-13-2011 at 10:13 AM.
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Old 05-13-2011, 10:06 AM   #6
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Anybody have any thoughts, as far a comfort and road condition absorbancy goes, on these...

So far what I've been seeing a lot of people use:
KYB's
Tokico's
Bilsteins
Koni

Here's what I think I know so far, but I'm open for correction:

KYB- closest to OEM, but slightly improved ride quality
Tokico- comparable to KYB, but offer more performance for cornering and racing.
Bilstein- Superior ride quality compared to both of the above mentioned...they just cost more.

Also there's Koni, Motorcraft, Lakewood, Edelbrock, Monroe, Gabriel, and Autotrust and I don't know anything about these...any input?


If I understand that right than I wouldn't mind paying an additional $40 per shock for the Bilsteins to get a better ride feel.

Also, how much do springs factor into all of this???

I'm willing to replace the springs if that may be causing how rough the ride feels. Originally I was thinking about lowering springs (only for looks), but if that is going to make the ride feel harder maybe I need to look into a softer spring and stop worrying so much about appearance.

I just want the car to feel nice on the road. I'm assuming it's so rough now because of the miles that are on the shocks and struts. With the research I've done I've seen that shocks should be replaced between 60,000 and 80,000mi. I have more than 80,000 so I'm hoping that's my problem.

ANY THOUGHTS WOULD BE VERY APPRECIATED!!!

Last edited by Tommy079; 05-13-2011 at 10:53 AM.
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Old 05-13-2011, 10:46 AM   #7
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Tommy even though i'm not really a suspension and tire guy i''ll give you my thoughts and opinions anyways: Ok first (if i'm understanding everything correctly) a 275/40/17 and a 315/35/17 will have the same overall height and ride quality assuming they're the same exact tire.

I've been doing a lot or research on shocks/struts lately, and i've come to a conclusion: I was initially going to go cheaper (KYB, Tokico Blues, Koni STR.T, etc..) but then i realized this is one particular area that i don't want to do on the cheap side. I have seen and read of guy's throwing on the cheap shocks/struts with springs that drop the car pretty hard like H&R super sports or Eibach sportlines, only to have problems down the road because the shocks/struts were being over worked for the springs they had chosen.

Personally, when the time comes, i'll be going with something better like Tokico Illumina 5-ways, Bilstiens, etc... i'm 100% sure yet.
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Old 05-13-2011, 11:01 AM   #8
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Mrtstang- I think what I'm learning is the Bilsteins are a pretty sweet ride. Short of doing air-ride or $500+ Eibach setup.
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Old 05-13-2011, 11:23 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tommy079 View Post
Well...this is the part I'm not understanding. It seems to me like they all have the "same" sidewill height. It seems like they are all 110mm?

But it sounds like you're saying the sidewall gets shorter. Is that right? You said it must get shorter as it gets wider, but I don't see how it's getting shorter. The number is just getting smaller, but that's because it's a percentage number and not a size in mm.

I mean I know that when you get taller wheels the sidewall gets shorter because the wheel takes up the space that would normall be rubber.

But if it gets wider it seems like all the above mentioned sidewalls are the same height.

What I'm saying is this: Shouldn't I get the same ride quality on a 315/35 that I do out of a 275/40?

Why I ask: I REALLY want 315's and it seems to me like they have just as much sidewall rubber as what I already have.

Am I understanding this wrong?

I mean if I go with a 20" wheel and a 315/25/20 (78.75mm sidewall) that's when you lose sidewall...am I right or am I still misunderstanding something.

I'm just asking all this because you said less sidewall means a harder ride, but I think the 315/35's have the same sidewall as what I already have.
Your right

I mis-spoke, or rather mis-wrote there The sidewalls are indeed the same height, but rather a lower percentage. This lower percentage, will lead to a harsher ride when maintaining the same make/model of tire. It just needs to be a lower percentage, because this number is based on the section width of the tire.

Your logic is great, but the sidewalls of a wider tire are generally stiffer to support that tire in the same way as a narrower one. A wider tire is going to be needed for improved grip. Were talking lateral grip in this case, as true straight line grip is another matter entirely and goes another direction. This lateral grip needs a sidewall structure that is stiffer than the narrower one, as you are placing higher loads on the tire in corners. Now... YOU may not ask this of a tire and just want a wider one for appearance, but can't have one without the other. If you researched this well, you will find a 315 with a comfort rating higher than another, but all street tires of this width should be focused on lateral grip, so stiffer ride is the result.

The short answer is a wider tire will be rougher than a narrower one.

Jazzer likes the way Tommy thinks

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Old 05-13-2011, 11:44 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jazzer The Cat View Post
the sidewalls of a wider tire are generally stiffer to support that tire in the same way as a narrower one.

The short answer is a wider tire will be rougher than a narrower one.

Ah Ha! This is the answer I was looking for! Now that I can completely understand...and I did not realize that this is how they make these tires.

On that note: I am willing to sacrifice some stiffness and comfort for a wide aggressive appearance. Now with that being said I think I may need to determine what tires provide the best level of comfort; as you suggested. Which may mean looking for tires between 295 and 315. And I'm ok with that seeing as how I'm just in the planning stages and haven't really bought wheels yet. In the mean time while I'm saving money I'll be learning!

That way I know exactly what I want when it's time to pull the trigger and buy wheels and tires.

Thanks again so much for your patience and willingness to clear up my questions and misunderstandings.

Last edited by Tommy079; 05-13-2011 at 11:56 AM.
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